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Publisher's Summary

Can you ever outrun your past?

From actress, producer, and writer Krysten Ritter, a psychological suspense novel about a woman forced to confront her past in the wake of small-town corruption.

It has been 10 years since Abby Williams left home and scrubbed away all visible evidence of her small-town roots. Now, working as an environmental lawyer in Chicago, she has a thriving career, a modern apartment, and her pick of meaningless one-night stands.

But when a new case takes her back home to Barrens, Indiana, the life Abby painstakingly created begins to crack. Tasked with investigating Optimal Plastics, the town's most high-profile company and economic heart, Abby begins to find strange connections to Barrens' biggest scandal from more than a decade ago involving the popular Kaycee Mitchell and her closest friends - just before Kaycee disappeared for good.

Abby knows the key to solving any case lies in the weak spots, the unanswered questions. But as she tries desperately to find out what really happened to Kaycee, troubling memories begin to resurface, and she begins to doubt her own observations. And when she unearths an even more disturbing secret - a ritual called "The Game" - it will threaten the reputations and lives of the community and risk exposing a darkness that may consume her.

With tantalizing twists, slow-burning suspense, and a remote, rural town of just five claustrophobic miles, Bonfire is a dark exploration of what happens when your past and present collide.

©2017 Krysten Ritter (P)2017 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"A vicious years-old small town scandal makes the perfect backdrop for this gritty, moody mystery that will have listeners ripping through the audiobook at top speed. Bonfire ushers in a bold new voice to the suspense genre. I can't wait to see what Ritter dreams up next." (Mary Kubica, New York Times best-selling author of The Good Girl)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

I admit I bought this on Krysten Ritter's name

This book is about five times better written than most of the dozens of thrillers that I have picked up over the years because they were on sale as Audible Daily Deal. I paid full price for this on the strength of the author's acting. This book has better characters, better dialogue, and a better story than nearly all.
The writer was extremely good at letting you know which character is talking and reminding you of who is who- both huge points in audiobooks. I didn't get to the end feeling completely satisfied, but it was definitely in the upper 95th percentile. The end felt a bit rushed. I would happily discuss this further, but I am not going to give anything away here. I hope the author writes a lot more books.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent Mystery

Loved the plot and characters, Ritter has a knack for storytelling, total suspense up until the end.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Keeps you hanging until the end

A mystery that keeps you hanging on until the very end. I️ finished it in two days as I️ didn’t want to stop listening. Very well written and well narrated and hope I️ see another Ritter book in the future.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Worth a read/listen

I had been waiting for this book to come out since I was curious to see what kind of writing voice Krysten Ritter has. Plus, I love mystery so the plot seemed right up my alley for what usually grabs my attention. The story didn't disappoint at all. It had a good balance of suspense, pacing and storytelling that didn't give it all away, but didn't drag at the same time either. The narrator was great too and gave life to each of the characters in her inflections and voices for them. The only issue I ran into is that I tend to be really good at predicting early on who the villain is and the answers to the big mystery. It wasn't any different this time either, but I still highly enjoyed dissecting the clues right along with Abby the main character and seeing if I was right as the story went on. I was also pleasantly surprised by the bit of romance added into the story, which I always appreciate since I'm kind of a romantic. Overall, I think this book is worth a read/listen and I'm looking forward to other mysteries that Krysten Ritter might write.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Best book I've listened in a long time 😊

The story is so good that at the end I didn't realized that I was almost done. I truly wished the book was longer so I could be with these wonderfull characters at least for a couple of days more. Krysten Ritter, well done! 👏👏👏

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Wanting something more

This story started as a fairly conventional eco-thriller that I could honestly take or leave. There were some twists and turns thrown in that tried to steer you away from that convention but even those seemed like stories I had heard in other thrillers.
What kept this one fresh was the cynical tone and writing style that keep me hoping for more stories from Krysten Ritter.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Couldn't finish it

What character would you cut from Bonfire?

The main character is what bothered me most about this story. I think the author was trying to frame her as a feminist by having her enjoy casual sex, but the character was also constantly acting as if she lacked agency over her life and everyday situations. She was also so overly dramatic that the plot could barely move forward towards the end. I only had an hour left and I couldn't finish the book- I just couldn't listen to the main character obsess for the umpteenth time over things that had already happened and been obsessed over.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Probably best for young adults

Not a bad first novel, but felt a bit labored and amateurish; probably more fitting for the young adult genre. Having said that, Ritter shows promise as a writer - I'll definitely read her next novel.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • DT
  • 09-16-18

Not brilliant, but good

This book was pleasantly surprising. At first, I worried it would fall into the same old conventions--woman uncovers mystery / no one believes her / she goes insane, but is vindicated in the end. I was happy that the book didn't totally follow that stream.
Though it felt like an amalgamation of a few books in this genre, the story went to an interesting place and kept me entertained. Good quick read with a great narrator.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Story felt more like a Lifetime movie to me.

I was hoping for a crime novel with a complex plot and characters. This was more "young adult" in my opinion. Kind of light. Not a bad book, but not memorable.